Meet the NLC Black Caucus Co-Chairs
Chef Chad has been in the food service industry for more than fifteen years. His journey in the culinary field began after he was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes and spent a month in the hospital on what he calls an “unplanned vacation”. His search for better quality food led him to purchase one of the first organic restaurants in Miami’s Design District, The “A” Miami Café. Chef was awarded numerous accolades, including, the 33 Emerging Creative Minds of Miami Award at Art Basel, Washington Post “Must Visit” in Miami and the Best Natural Food Award by New Times Magazine. After completing a bike tour around the State of Florida, Chef realized how many communities were suffering because of food inequality and founded His companies as an answer to the issues he witnessed. He has been personal chef to a number of celebrities and also had the honor of feeding President Barack & Michelle Obama. He is a regularly featured Chef at the coveted Food Network/ Cooking Channel South Beach Wine and Food Festival every year.
Myra Lee is the Co-founder and Chapter Director of NLC Detroit. Throughout her career, she has been committed to dismantling systems of oppression that are legally legitimized by federal, state and local governance which perpetuate social injustices and the removal of human dignity in marginalized communities of color. She is passionate about advancing effective social policy to address systemic issues of poverty, racial inequality, and the gap between the private and public sector in leadership, investment, and development in urban centers in the state of Michigan. Ms. Lee attended Michigan State University where she earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Horticulture, specializing in Environmental Economics and Policy.
For several years, Ms. Lee worked as an independent consultant in the non-profit sector as a policy analyst specializing in issues related to food security and malnutrition for women and children, social determinants that cause health disparities in African American and communities of color, and policy implications to promote women's economic empowerment within urban and rural communities both domestically and internationally. Some of her consulting work domestically included strategizing market-based solutions, such as business incubators and resource-sharing opportunities to support entrepreneurs in agriculture, processing, distribution, and value-added product production. In addition, she provided innovative financing and business assistance to food enterprises that are supporting farmers in meeting the growing demand for local, sustainably-grown food.
After her completion of serving as an Executive Office intern with Governor’s Office of Urban and Metropolitan Initiatives, Ms. Lee completed her graduate studies at the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy at University of Michigan where she received her Master of Public Policy degree and obtained invaluable experience on Capitol Hill. First serving as a clerk and legal intern for the U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform for U.S. Representative Elijah Cummings and then being selected as the inaugural Riecker Michigan Delegation Fellow. During this time of public service, Ms. Lee served a six month term as a legislative fellow with the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry for U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow in Washington D.C. Ms. Lee serves as the District Business Outreach Coordinator for the Office of Congresswoman Brenda L. Lawrence (MI-14). In this role Ms. Lee manages constituent services related to small business and chamber relations, workforce development, and economic development.